Banged-up Sharks rack up injuries in Game 5

Andrew G. Zuber
SAN JOSE, CALIFORNIA - MAY 11: Joe Pavelski #8 of the San Jose Sharks celebrates with his teammates Erik Karlsson #65 and Brent Burns #88 after scoring a goal on Jordan Binnington #50 of the St. Louis Blues during the first period in Game One of the Western Conference Finals during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center on May 11, 2019 in San Jose, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

The San Jose Sharks’ prized offseason acquisition may not be on hand to help the team stave off elimination after a rough appearance in Game 5.

There were questions coming in to the game about whether a groin injury may keep defenceman Erik Karlsson out of the lineup, and though he tried to gut it out, he only managed to make it about halfway through before heading back to the dressing room.

Karlsson played a tough seven-plus minutes in the first period, but did not look like his perennial Norris-finalist self. His giveaway and subsequent screen on goaltender Martin Jones can be pretty easily traced as the cause for the game’s first goal, and served as a harbinger for a 5-0 loss and an abbreviated appearance for Karlsson.

EK was in visible pain on the bench near the end of the first period, and managed to play just over three minutes in the second before deciding not to return for the third period.

Also concerning for the Sharks was captain Joe Pavelski, who left in the third period after looking woozy following a shot into the boards.

Pavelski has already missed time in these playoffs with concussion symptoms following a brutal injury against the Vegas Golden Knights.

Additionally, Tomas Hertl and Joonas Donskoi also exited Game 5 with injuries, leaving the Sharks with an extremely spacious bench down the stretch. To state the obvious, this is not great news for the Sharks, and puts them in a tough spot to keep their playoff hopes alive.

The end of any team’s season usually comes with a laundry list of injuries that players had worked through, and it looks like the Sharks’ edition will be a lengthy one.

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